Welcome to Empirical Purple

A blog by Simon Brady to cover a surprisingly wide range of geekiness, in a combination that no-one else does quite the same way. Probably. Either that, or it'll just be Simon talking about the likes of Football (usually the Soccer variety), PC & Tabletop Gaming, WWE, Movies, Music and occasionally even my actual job of Graphic Design, depending on what I'm up to in the world.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Return of the Strat

As Pay Per View's that aren't Wrestlemania go, Sunday night's Elimination Chamber was quite good. It's nowhere on the list of all-time great events, but it was certainly not one of the stinkers.

First-up, the international sergeant jump champion, Kofi Kingston (oh boy, can he ever get some air time) was defeated by the completely unimpressive-looking Alberto Del Rio. Trading on the inverted stereotype of a rich Mexcian - as anyone who wrestles and has a white towel around their neck is somehow rich (see JBL) - the most exciting thing about Del Rio appeared to be the Aston Martin he drove for about 10 yards to get into the arena. A fairly good match, though, but with the wrong result, just to get everyone nice and annoyed for the rest of the evening.

The first Elimination Chamber match of the night was probably the best - with Kane, the Big Show and Drew McIntyre throwing everyone around, and Rey Mysterio and Wade Barrett generally being on the end of things. Lots of great moments, particularly from Kane and Mysterio, though Edge keeping a hold of his title was well deserved. Kane should surely win one of these eventually, right? Christian coming out to save Edge from Del Rio's attack afterwards was a lovely touch - we do love Captain Charisma - as Edge and Christian are probably up to the point in their careers where they can be properly loved, even when they're playing the bad guys.

Trish Stratus returned to prove she's no good at Rock/Booker T impressions, but that's not what she's there for in the first place, as first and foremost she's a great wrestler. Booker T, however, annoyed me throughout the commentary. Essentially there to say "Oh! Did you see that?!" and get every kick-out/pin prediction wrong. Go back to accidentally using racial slurs against the Hulkster, will you?

Then came the first match that no-one seemed to care about - the comedy stylings of Santino Marella and Vladiimr Kozlov against two guys I've never heard of. The two nobodies won, and generally nobody seemed to be bothered either way, except the odd Santino fan.

Vickie Guerrero then quickly proved that nobody wants to hear what she's got to say as they recycle her storylines, and the non-event non-fighting shortly after was only notable for Trish Stratus wrestling in 5-inch heels - a feat in itself.

The match between The Miz and Jerry Lawler was my low point - not for the match, which was by far the best singles match of the night, but for Michael Cole's commentary. Heel commentators simply don't work as the lead, and having three of them further complicated matters. The main commentator should always be the sensible one - the Gorilla Monsoon or the Jim Ross - with the heel having his input every now and then. This way round, the senior commentator - Cole - got to be his usual irritating self with no-one to hold him back. Josh Matthews cut a grim figure as he listened to Cole's crap, but had no way of putting on a leash and tugging very hard at the e-mail reader.

E-mails. From the RAW General Manager. When on earth will they realise that this is one of the dumbest ideas they've ever come up with. It even had to happen during the RAW Elimination Chamber match, too, just so CM Punk could re-enter the ring after being annihilated by Randy Orton. It was interesting to see the crowd's reaction to Orton, as bar the opening of John Cena's music, it sounded like Orton got the biggest cheer of the six. Quite what R-Truth was doing in there, I have no idea, but the star of that, for me, was John Morrison. Of course Cena was going to win, of course Orton and Punk were going to have a great fight, and of course Morrison was going to do something awesome. Falling 16 feet from the top of the cage just to flatten Sheamus, before taking all sorts of self-inflicted punishment to his knee.

All in all, a good PPV, and worth watching - sets up Wrestlemania very nicely.

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